Video Game Violence
From my experience, the video game world is mostly dominated by males. This is not necessarily because violence is a guy thing, but maybe because the games are more geared towards males. This could be viewed as a chicken and the egg type phenomenon as well because one could ask why the games are geared towards a predominately male audience. Males could be more likely to play the games because they are tailored for them, or they could be tailored for them because males are more likely to purchase the games.
I can definitely immagine an alternate set of games that would not have violence and would appeal to women as well as men. From my own experience, when I was younger we had some games that were about finishing levels and getting past things that would just make you have to start the level over again. This, as I remember, was equally appealing to my brother and me. Now, however, there are games such as "Grand Theft Auto" and the like, that my brother plays, but I have no interest in. This might also be because of the fact that it is a lot more complicated and takes a lot more time to master than the other games did. I dont have very much patience and, when I want to play a game, I want it to feel like a game and not something that I have to spend a lot of time on just to understand and be able to do. This might also be one of the reasons why most women are not as into games as men are.
As Kendall talks about men and women both distancing themselves from femininity (85) in the muds, it could be the same in the gaming community. There is a large amout of competitiveness and trash talk that goes on and so it might be beneficial for the women to adopt a more masculine identity when participating in games online. In the same respect, women who are more masculine might be more attracted to most of the games that are out there. That means that the games would only appeal to that portion of women who embodied more masculine traits.
As for games making a lasting impression on the way kids grow up, I would have to say that I am not as concerned as some are. I think that excessive use of video games is probably harmful, just as excessive watching of television or excessive internet use would be. Kids should be learning and interacting with their environment and not just sitting in front of a tv or a computer. But, as for influencing the tendency of the child to commit violent acts, I dont think there is such a large connection. I feel that, in order for a child to be influenced, they would have to have little or no parental supervision or involvement and would have to have some other sort of mental problem in addition to the violence in games. If a parent is doing his/her job and making it clear to their children that violence is wrong, then a child should be able to differentiate between the games he/she plays and reality.
There is definitely a difference with the games now and the ones that i had when I was growing up. They have made some giant leaps in the graphics, types of games available, and sheer number of games and devices that are available. If I had kids, I would not ban them from playing video games but I would definitely not let them sit in front of it for hours on end. Their game playing would have limits and I would definitely make sure that they knew that there were differences from what is acceptable behavior in a video game as opposed to in real life.